Smug…

Tonight my gratitude has a tinge of smugness…

 

Is that a bad thing?

 

To be so grateful that you feel smug? To feel smug is feeling almost offensive satisfaction for your situation, does it not?

 

Well that is how I feel…

 

Grateful and smug…

 

Today, I got to kiss my boys good morning and have breakfast with them both… I got to see Willy make his own toast for the first time…   I love the firsts…

 

Today I got to read with both my boys and hear how well they are progressing at school…

 

Today I got to stand in front of a classroom and inspire children to think for themselves.. understand the world and their impact on it and the impact of the world on them.

 

Today I got to spend time with a wonderful ‘old’ friend and wax lyrical about how lucky we both were! How grateful we were to have this time with our children … to have the time to grab a nice coffee and share our gratitudes, and swop stories…

 

Today I got to exercise… to feel fit and healthy… even though I can feel a tickle and a sniffle coming on … (I am healthy.  I am healthy!  I am full of health!)

 

Today I got to pick up my youngest and have quality time with him, make him feel special with one on one time… and wave to him in the pool and watch him proudly swimming like a frog…

 

Today I got to eat supper with my children, cuddle them on the sofa under blankets and kiss their soft cheeks and hair… and hear the words ‘I love you, Mama’ as I tuck them under their duvets…

 

Today I got to treat two friends to a facial and a makeover .. and if I do say so myself, my work was good! And I am proud of myself…

 

Today I got to do the 2 things I always wanted to do – be a Mummy… not only in just the physical sense of the act of becoming a parent and giving birth, but actively taking an interest in my offspring’s wellbeing, safety, security and providing a loving environment myself…   and secondly to stand in front of a school class and provide an inspiring environment for children to learn.

 

Today I got to do the 2 things I always wanted to do AND see friends, have fun and keep healthy!

 

Today I am full of smug gratitude… Today I am the cat that got the cream! I could even be Bagpuss!

the cat that got the cream

 

 

Diamonds or Dust?

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It’s funny… I always worry the night before that I am not going to have anything to say or write about in my blog for the following day. I say to myself… ‘it’s ok – you can just write a line along the lines of… ‘nothing out of the ordinary day, nothing to share, nothing happening….’.. But that doesn’t seem to be my life!

This morning, just after 9am, I was headhunted by a new small consulting firm in London to go and interview to be a Partner to grow their business.

Wow.

Just as I bravely, mentally cut the ties to my old life. Out of the blue. I am flattered. I am scared. I even get butterflies?!

Alarm bells ring! What is this? Is this a test? A flattering temptation or an obstacle to test my determination and decision to lead a new life? A life of peace and tranquility, mindfulness, health, present and presence in my boys’ life (3 of them… husband is always included in reference to ‘boys’)… my new slice of the bread in my career / life path sandwich.

I didn’t ask the universe for this? How did it manifest?! I haven’t updated my Linked-in or online CV in months…

All of this flashes across my mind in the split seconds that I listen to the lovely, complimentary lady on the end of the phone. In my head, I hear James rejoicing! How proud he would be … his wife back in the corporate game… the money! The accolades! But I see, I see clearly the weeks away from home for this is a job and company based in London – 200 miles away from my boys, the pressure, the stress, the unhealthy competition, brown-nosing, selling, the long days and nights, all the reasons why I am moving on.

So if this is a test, I passed it. With flying colours, I politely said that at this point, I couldn’t consider being away from home but thank you for the opportunity.

I ponder… my head tipping this way and that…as I drive to various drop offs… Pressure. An interesting word.

‘’A continual physical force exerted on or against an object by something in contact with it’’.

Or

‘’The use of persuasion or intimidation to make someone do something’’

I think we often see the word ‘pressure’ as having negative connotations. Pressure can lead to stress… stress can lead to cracks and ultimate collapse. Pressure on a person or object. I know that pressure in my corporate life, lead to huge stress, manifesting in poor health, eczema, tiredness, to cracks in my marriage, family life and final collapse of my world as I knew it. Ashes… Dust….. to be swept under the carpet or float away in the wind of change.

Yet today, I put pressure on myself to be healthy, do some form of exercise every day – from light to intense, pilates to spin, dog walk to gym. I have put pressure on myself to finding 30 minutes each busy day to write a daily blog about my life in the sandwich years. I put pressure on myself to grow my health, wellness and wellbeing business, to coach others to success with whatever health or career goal. I put pressure on myself to write the best class plans for my volunteer mentoring, the best speech for when I speak as a guest speaker in schools in the north. And yet this pressure, I thrive under! I am alive! I am happy… I am calm and energetic at the same time. I am being asked to do more, be more… live more!

So pressure can be good… I am reminded of a well known quote ‘ Diamonds are but carbon, until they are put under pressure’.

Be be warned… for there is a fine line between the good and the bad. The choice between Diamonds or Dust?

My experience is that you can do what you think you love to do, generate a big bank balance, but if the pressure is coming from external forces, you can end up lacking wealth or even health.

Or you can dig deep, follow your dreams, find out what it is you want to do … and do it. Do it for free. Do it for the love of doing it. Do it part time until you can do lots of it…   I strongly believe that if you are doing what you love, no matter how much pressure you are under, you will always shine, sparkle, spread your joy. If the pressure comes from within, you will create diamonds.

I love Mondays!

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I love Mondays!

I used to HATE Mondays…

Funny how life changes…

In my Accenture days or freelance consultancy days, Mondays meant reeeeeeealllly early starts… to get to wherever the client site was. My worst trip was the one to work for New Look in Weymouth on the South Coast of the UK, when I lived in South London. It consisted of tubes, buses, a train, a change, and a long meandering drive (beautiful if you weren’t in a rush!), hugely frustrating drive behind tractors or caravans as there were so few overtaking places…in a random hire car. Up at the crack of dawn only to arrive by lunchtime to get some terrible food in a meagre canteen above the ‘shed’ as we would fondly refer to the huge warehouse and distribution centre for this up and coming fast fashion retailer.

It was those Mondays that used to eat in to your Sundays… rather than relaxing on the sofa, holding a roast-full-tummy, snoozing to the Antiques Roadshow, I would be restless, dashing around the house packing a suitcase, searching a laptop bag and paperwork that I may have thrown under a bed in disgust… and where the hell was my ‘on call’ phone?! Ugh – that was another hell… the fear of being called in the middle of the night to log into the computer system and work out why an overnight batch schedule had failed.. Black screens, green letters and blinking cursors – I hope I never see you again…. Cold, panic sweats as I used to fear whatever I did would bring a whole warehouse picking team to a stand still, waiting in a cold Weymouth car park at 4am, shaking their fists at me…. ‘the tech geek’, warm in a pink hotel room, under a duvet, laptop open, hair wild with frustration as I look for a bit of false information that has caused the system crash…

I digress… my old life… one I look back on, fondly, with good memories too of working with brilliant, talented minds, big drinkers… it wasn’t all screen time, only 90% of it. The rest was flaming drambuies, tiger tiger, back slapping….

So to the Mondays of my todays…

Instead of a nervous panic searching for lost items, it is more of a game… getting the boys to get their books together, do they have the right sports kit, enough socks, have they learnt their spellings? If not, they soon will…   I use a timer…How quickly can we do it this week? The quicker they do it, the quicker we can watch a family movie, snuggle up… play a board game (their favourite is Monopoloy James Bond 007 – brilliant if you have boys!).

For me, Sundays are the end of a week and a time for reflection. I look forward to waking up at 6, ready to plan the week ahead, start a fresh; out with the old, in with the new – how can we improve this week? Easy this week for me – last week was a write off! So I am re-arranging my cancelled meetings, back to pilates at 6am, back to healthy eating, back to the gym, spin and I may try something new this week? Hot yoga? What will I share with my class on Thurday – the topic is Role Models – what a great subject to research…  What coaching topic shall I share with my team, my leaders that I build businesses with..?

Who will I meet? What will I learn?

Bring it on Monday!

Blackberry picking

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Dobby is blocking my conversations with Snow White today. It’s one of those days… he is on my shoulder, in front of my face, relentless.

I feel guilty for eating a curry, for having cake, my jeans feel tight, I haven’t exercised for a week other than a couple of dog walks… I feel unappreciated as I peel potatos, sweet potatos, apples, carrots and make a gluten free crumble. Everything is winding me up – grass all over the kitchen floor from football boots and Timberlands from double rugby this morning…. I can’t remember any time anyone said thank you or made me feel valued or loved… I am sick of having a cold. Frustrated by inertia.

I am torn.

Torn between letting my emotions out and throwing cushions, having a trantrum or a cry… or just growing up and getting on with it. Jobs to be done, Sunday roast to be cooked, rugby kit to be washed, homework to be done… blackberries to be picked.

I pick blackberries… it makes me a little melancholy as I am reminded of the boxes of blackberries I picked with my Mum this time last year…  I wonder how she is?  Dad took in some shampoo and her favourite tea yesterday, I do hope they have washed her … given her a cup of Earl Grey with lemon.

….

I make a wise decision. I put on my earphones and hit the play button to listen to Oprah.

Wherever I had left off before, started with the right chapter, for sure. She talks about her interviews with men who all had affairs, despite their strong loyal ethics. They all had a common theme – they all wanted to be heard, valued, appreciated, listened to… to feel loved.

Isn’t that what everyone wants? The feeling bit anyway – the feeling of being loved and appreciated…

She makes an interesting point – we shouldn’t wait for others to make us feel this way… We need to feel this for ourselves first…. Value ourselves, love ourselves, appreciate what and who we are first…   For then we aren’t reliant on others to feel good, happy. Look inward and work out what is good about ourselves and our lives… Use gratitude as a way of recognizing how lucky, how brilliant, how wonderful we and are lives are.

How did I forget that today? Since reading The Magic last year, gratitude has played a major part of my daily routine – either in the morning or last thing before I got to bed.

How grateful am I to have gorgeous, healthy sons, a kind and generous husband, a beautiful, warm, spacious Yorkshire stone converted barn to live in with all the mod cons (soooo grateful for my washing machine and tumble dryer – imagine doing all that washing by hand?!). How thankful for a lie in this morning, a hand delivered cup of morning tea, a proud 90 minutes on the sidelines watching the boys play rugby and score tries…more than the England team did last night!. Talking of which, gratitude for good friends as neigbours who bring delicious puddings and beers….

Gratitude for Oprah, for itunes and audiobooks to get me back on the happy path and out of the pity party.

So now it’s back to the aga – my in-laws arrive home in a couple of hours, the pork needs to go in and the topping on the crumble needs spreading…. But first, I think I will gather my family for one of our favourite Sunday past-times – a family cuddle on the sofa!

The victim, the hero(ine): Snow White and Dobby the house elf…

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The house is quiet. I have a hot coffee… and before I walk the dog, I thought I would empty my head. A little slice of my heaven….the quiet side, because I usually love the noise and chaos!

After 7 hours on a hard plastic chair and 11 hours with no food with only sneaky hidden sip of water when Willy wasn’t watching, we arrived home last night at about 7.30pm. My big man was home… a big bowl of pasta waiting for a very hungry and now very happy, jolly Willy. And a comment to me that I should get dinner on..

And here is where I watch a little scene play out in my head. I watch my thoughts… After two years of immersing myself in self development and life coaching with my wonderful coach, Karen, I see the Victim battle with the Heroine.

In my mind they have names, faces… it’s easier to watch then. My Heroine is Snow White… graceful, kind, loving, generous, abundant always smiling and singing a happy tune! Fa La La!!! My victim, my saboteur, is Dobby the house elf – he can’t help it but he is negative, selfish, fearful, skipping and hopping and dancing around nervously…

Dobby shouts back, hopping and waving his little fist.. ‘WHAT?! Are you serious? Me cook? Now? I can barely stand? I had a protein shake at 7am and nothing since, emotionally drained from worry and relief, still full of cold and you want me to cook?!’…

But Snow White is there… calm and floaty… ‘but look at him… he is tired.. he has tired eyes from driving 200 miles this evening and 80 this morning, he has a red nose so clearly has a cold, he has worked so hard this week.. and he has made the pasta… And look! Don’t you remember you took a stew out of the freezer this morning for tonight anyway? All you have to do is tip it in a pan and reheat it?’

Dobby still isn’t quite finished…little fists raised, gallopping around the kitchen… ‘but no one has looked after you this week? Don’t you want some TLC? Weren’t you looking forward to one of his big bear hugs, enveloping you in warmth and certainty? Someone to make you a hot drink and give you a hug and say everything will be ok? Can’t he see you need that? Go on – give him a peace of your mind!’

Thank God for Snow White… ‘If you cook for him, give him your soft tissues, he will hug you…. Look he is suffering just as much as you – can’t you hear him grunting, snorting, groaning? He needs a hug too and looking after… Look after him and he will look after you.’  Fa la la!

….

You are probably reading this and thinking, My God – she needs to join her mother in the Mental Hospital!  Is she seriously visualising Snow White and Dobby prancing around her kitchen?

But having read ‘The Power of Now’, ‘The Chimp Paradox’…I am beginning to understand so much more about the mind… How you can change reactions in to responses…   One of my favourite quotes, I can’t remember who said it as there as so many variations from so many key authors, speakers… ‘Where focus goes, energy flows and results show’. Us British are so good at focus on the negative, playing the underdog… when really we should focus on what we want, the positives we have.

Years ago I used to let Dobby rule my reactions and last night would have ended up in arguments and no supper, tears and frustration.

Just call me Snow White.

Tale of two hospitals….

Does anyone have a week in which absolutely nothing goes as planned? Nothing? (Well my mentoring did – so that’s a white lie!)

I was so looking forward to this week – lots of meetings, coffee dates, gym, spin and appointments, dinner with friends… But I spent 3 days just managing to get the boys to school and sleeping for my usually productive hours. Illness or emotion getting the better of me…
And today – the first day I feel less achy, have more gumption, managed to get up for my Pilates and even had enough energy to take the dog for walk… I get a call from school saying that Willy is unusually unhappy with severe stomach pains. He hasn’t had gluten and he hasn’t been sick. But he is clearly distressed and doubled in pain…. So we sit in the doctors, with my mind wandering from trapped wind to appendicitis.. 
The doctor is stumped… Willy is clearly in pain but can’t explain it. He says it could go either way – stop suddenly or deteriorate rapidly. Perplexed… Considering his options… And Willy suddenly deteriorates, writhing in pain… Little face red and crying.. So unlike my happy little mouse. 
Decision made… He starts to ring the hospital… I tell him firmly under no circumstances will I go back to the hospital who took 3 months to misdiagnose Willy with reflux and then rush him to have open stomach surgery. He puts the phone down and asks me where I would go! It may have longer waiting times and I may not get a nice cup of tea and a carpet but at least I will have faith in the diagnosis.
So I am dressed in my dog walking kit, no make up, hair a mess… How long am I going to be? Do I nip home for snacks, a shower, change and look respectable? One look at willy and I know that is unreasonable… Leeds will have to take me as I am…. 
That was at 11 am… 
It is now 15.43…. We are still here.
Willy was so brave – wards are scary in Leeds. No position was comfy and he did his flappy bird impression, creased up little face pleading at me…. Heart wrenching as a parent and you would do anything to take the pain. I keep calm and pray, visualise a miraculous recovery, a hearty trump.. Anything but the thought of surgery on my little man… It made me weak at the knees 5 years ago and I know it will have the same effect even now.
Willy calms and lies in the one position he finds relief. And 30 minutes later he looks up and asks to go home…. He feels better. I didn’t hear a trump. 
Is this a miracle?  
He has been playing nicely and I have asked to leave but we can’t go! The surgeon has to feel his tummy and discharge us… Even though the bugs going round could be the answer, it could be appendicitis or grumbling appendix… We have to wait.
Willy and I don’t do well without food. Breakfast at 7 feels a long time ago.
I commend the NHS… It is Friday. So many poorly poorly children, babies. The place is over spilling.. But we have no idea where we are on a list – others arriving after us are seen first… Others seemingly worse are also still here. Communication is seriously lacking… The nurses can’t answer my questions, as lovely and kind as they are.
There are parallels with the NHS mental hospital behind whose iron bars my mum is hidden… My dad is still unable to find answers about the plans for my mum, how long will she be observed, when will they try new drugs, what drugs, is the plan for her to leave … When can we ring, who should we speak to, who is looking after her, what has she eaten… When did she last have a bath? No one can tell us…. 
I am incredibly grateful for the NHS and the wonderful service they provide and I know how hard everyone works, having great friends as consultants, consultant surgeons, anaesthetists, doctors and nurses, OT’s… Even overworked.. 
I would be really, overly grateful if someone could just come and tell me if Willy can eat something, drink something, if we can go home… 
  

Dreams do come true!

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Today is the day that is going to lift me out of the haze of snot, the muffliness of blocked ears.

It felt a little bit like Christmas as I was so excited and awake well before my alarm.. Today was my first day in front of a class of 15 ten year old girls.

My childhood dream as a little girl was to be a teacher, a writer and painter and a Mummy.

At school I was incredibly creative – I was always top in Art exams, I wrote endless stories in note books and I made lace… (yes – lace with bobbins… !). I wanted to take Art and Latin and languages for my A levels but my teachers and parents persuaded me otherwise – I was very good at Maths too, so it was double Maths and double languages for me. I listened again and was influenced by my elders and took Business Management with French for a Degree and at the end of a 4 year course I still had no idea what I wanted to do… A dream of being a teacher, a painter and a writer long lost as my peers all signed up with big blue chip companies.

I fell in to Management Consultancy, quite by chance… but I suppose it was a happy chance as it appealed to both my creative side as well as my analytical side. I got to design systems, look at ‘architecture’ and became part of the technology revolution in retailing. It was a love, hate relationship! It paid fantastically, it was a brilliant challenge, it was time consuming, stressful and eventually took too much time away from my family.

So here I am … going back to realize my dreams!

I stood in front of my class of 15 ten year olds and shared my story proudly. I may not be a true teacher in academic or professional terms, but I can teach them about life, or my experiences of life:  Be clear on your dreams. Ask for help if you don’t know what it is you are looking for. If you find what you are doing doesn’t make you happy, be brave and have the courage to change. True success is doing what you love, because that is what will make you happy… and happiness is the key to success!

I may not be a true painter… but in my Health, Wellness and Wellbeing business, I paint the picture of how life can be like when you are healthy, happy, doing what you love, being your authentic self.

I may not be a true writer, haven’t written a novel… but I am getting there!

So I guess, that’s not bad … realizing all your dreams before you reach 40 because my last dream of being a Mummy is definitely fulfilled… I changed bed sheets 4 times last night, kissed little heads multiple times, trod on lego, picked up discarded clothes, read stories and awoke to my alarm clock of pattering feet as Tom races to dive on my bed with a big grin as he is always delighted to see a new day begin!

Still Alice….

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So I watched ‘Still Alice’ last night. Something I have been putting off for ages as I thought it would make me melt down, sob too much. So many had warned me off it…

It was a lovely portrayal of a young, brilliant professor who has early onset of Alzheimer’s at 50. It shows the slow, almost minor forgetfulness of names, words, places that could be just old age… it shows how the progression of Alzheimer’s speeds up, to forgetting people, well known places to incontinence and inability to recognize any one, walk or even speak in anything other than grunts. It shows the sadness of the immediate family members as they see the degradation of a beautiful mind within a still outwardly beautiful person.

It was a lovely portrayal. Isn’t that sad…. There, there Alzheimer’s… That’s not so bad, I could handle that…

It didn’t make me cry, sob like I hoped it would. I found it rather a dumbed down, watered down, rather beautiful betrayal of an incredibly cruel disease. I found it more frustrating rather than emotive.

Where are the furious tantrums, the slamming of doors, the throwing of pots, the lunatic shouting? The long silences while locked in a bathroom or bedroom? Where are the hours of searching for a missing loved one and finding them miles and miles away at an old friend’s house or side of a motorway? Where are the scenes of complete lack of recognition for a daughter, a husband? Where are the scenes of self preservation, knife attacks out of gut instinct that something is wrong… so incredibly wrong… but just not sure what?

I felt robbed when it ended. I wanted to know what happened next? How did their family deal with putting their beautiful mother in care, in a home? How did they deal with the grief? The guilt? Were they told they couldn’t visit? Did they ring daily to find out how she was? How did they cope with the frustration of not knowing anything? How did they knock down the brick wall that is the NHS mental care home system? Did they go and sit outside the very important Doctor’s door until he had time to respond to a father, husband’s desperate need for information?

My Mum is lost inside her head.

We are lost in the world outside it without her.

It’s 11.38 and the other half of my sandwich beckons… my head still fuzzy with cold, blocked ears making me dizzy but there is still so much to do!

I mustn’t forget to walk the dog.

The Glass Ceiling and the Brick Wall

Allelujah! There are others out there that have never heard of the Sandwich Years! I shared this concept with some wonderful new friends I have made at the new school my son has started and they were as fascinated as I was…

I was with a group of highly talented, educated professional Mums… A lawyer, interior designer from London, fashion designer/marketer and academic all with glowing careers… all married to highly successful men – professor, consultant, director, etc.

So what do I mean by professional Mum’s… they are professionals both in their field and as a Mum. And here is the sandwich again… Can you be the whole sandwich – the professional and the Mum? Where does the wife bit come in? Friend? It is sounding now more like a club sandwich?

Can you be the club sandwich all at once? Can a woman have it all is the cliché question? I heard one clever answer ‘yes – but not all at the same time’.

And here is the dilemma – the discussion point over countless posh coffees and herbal teas. The brave pioneering women in history before us, fought for women to have the same rights to work, be successful, have a voice, a say on how we wish society to be… to stand alongside men in the church, in business as equals.

We are highly educated in physics, maths, languages, business and everything we need to be at the top of the corporate ladder. Told we can do anything, be anything and smash through the ‘glass ceiling’ that has been talked about and theorized in so many of the books I read at university.

We leave having children until later and later in to our 30’s and sometimes 40’s, focused on the top levels of leadership to prove we are the equals of men. We leave our children with nannies and after school clubs…. Glued to a blackberry, android or apple device ensuring we respond within a nanosecond to any crisis, text, email or joke… wafting away a small child desperate for our attention. We socialize and network, for we can’t feel like we can say we have children at home to kiss good night, husbands to nuture and cook for, for fear of missing out, missing out on that connection, that opportunity for a discussion with someone who could mean a promotion, a step up to that dizzy height where we will feel accomplished and prove our teachers/parents proud.

I am guilty of this.

Or I was.

It took a few wake up calls before I made a choice. A decision.

A wonderful friend, mentor and boss with cancer to make me realize that if that happened to me I would regret the time in the office rather than time with my boys. There are other triggers, still too painful to write about…

I am no 50’s housewife… but I made a decision to put my family first. Let my corporate career take a back seat. And so have these wonderful women I sip coffee with. We have all found new ways in which to feel a challenge, have a purpose, give value, fill our time so that we do have an identity (rather than Mrs ‘X’, wife to Mr ‘X’), so that we can still tip our hats at the women who gave us our ‘freedom from the kitchen sink’ rights. At the same time, provide a calm, safe, loving environment for both children and our men. Is this the new sense of accomplishment… ?

In the words of Oprah, ‘what I know for sure’, there is only one life for us all and it can be cut short by physical or mental illness… our children mature, age, grow up quickly… so quickly. We only have a few summers before our boys will no longer want to be seen with us! So the time I have here will be with the ones I love, the ones I cherish… not in a boardroom or a fancy restaurant… but being Mrs Taxi to and from school, swimming, football, rugby… being a wife that’s good, caring, attentive and interested…

But I will be more too, my 1970’s and 80’s programming is still in tact… Along with countless other successful women, I will find new ways to prove that I continue to be man’s equal, find new flexible ways to feel accomplished outside of corporate environments and outside of the home….

Are we a new band of women who will change the shape of society, improve on it once again… Are we the generation that will show the future generations how to have balance between creating harmony between earning a living and living a life? Is there such a thing or will we learn to be at peace living in a beautiful chaos of all the different threads of life?

Another thing I know for sure, is that women of today are lucky. Incredibly lucky to have the choice.  The choice to decide their future, their success, their happiness… to make their own club sandwich with whatever filling they want it in….

But I have never seen a sophisticated, elegant women put a big club sandwich in their mouth all at once..

PS…The brick wall….It seems that once someone goes in to the NHS mental health care scheme, they go behind one. Thinking of you Mumbo… Please know I keep ringing to ask about you…. But no one can give me answers.

My favourite bit

James is home.  And with his arrival, it feels like someone turned off the power switch.  It honestly felt like the energy just flowed from my body as I saw him at the train station, I could barely drive the car the last few yards.  Thank goodness he is the driver in this family.

I had a whole topic I wanted to write about today, whizzing around in my head following conversations this morning with some wonderful new friends… maybe it needs to mature a bit?  roll around in my head a bit more… maybe I just don’t have the energy to write out the discussion, debate that is playing out in my head…. maybe I am just exhausted, emotionally, physically, mentally?

Maybe I set myself too tough a challenge… a blog a day?  what was I thinking?  as if I need more to do… But I am a tenacious soul and if I say I will do something, I will… even if the excitement of the initial moment has gone.  The definition of commitment.  But that’s a whole new topic and don’t get me started… It’s far to easy to not be these days…

I always end the day with my boys in bed, asking them what their favourite bit of the day was… Willy always answers ‘this bit’ as he throws his arms around my neck and kisses me.  Tom always says ‘dunno’… followed by ‘which player do you like best out of my football cards’ or ‘Mummy.. did you know…’

My favourite bit today was watching the interaction of the boys with their weekend Dad… as if no days had passed, chatting, laughing..hearing the joy in their voices, singing silly songs and pulling hair.  I loved the family movie time as we all snuggle in a heap on the sofa, tangled legs, bony elbows and knees… I loved hearing a sleepy boy creep down the stairs to give Daddy a note… ‘I love my Dad a lot’.